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In the spotlight: Deona Julary

Updated: Nov 10, 2021

What is your background?

I am a 14-year old high schooler at Hinsdale Central High School in the suburbs of Chicago. My strengths lie in organization, leadership, and problem-solving. I love to coach and compete in the Future Problem Solving Program International (FPSPI), where most of my experience in foresight work comes from.

At Teach The Future, I work on projects that help expand the youth network and provide suggestions to the core team from a youth perspective.

What drives you in life?

Here are three quotes that inspire me:

"My life is my message."

Mahatma Gandhi

"Life is a continuous exercise in creative problem solving."

Michael J. Gelb

"If you're not prepared to be wrong, you'll never come up with anything original."

Sir Ken Robinson

How did you hear about Teach The Future?

I learned about Teach The Future at the Virtual Future Problem Solving Program International International Conference in 2020. Dr. Peter Bishop and Kay Strong gave a workshop on teaching the future and I was immediately intrigued to learn more.

I checked out Teach The Future's website and was inspired by the mission to promote futures literacy to students and educators across the world. I joined as a Youth Intern in December 2020.

Why do you feel teaching the future is important?

Teaching the future today helps prepare leaders, changemakers, and problem-solvers for tomorrow. Shifting our ways of thinking about the future will help us face uncertainty and issues that are threatening our planet and its people. Learning about the tools and initiative one can take to get to various futures is extremely important in the 21st century and onwards.

Why is teaching the future important specifically for youngsters?

I think our current education system lacks focus on different answers, scenarios, and perspectives, stifles imagination and creativity, and doesn't put the content we learn into practice. We are the future. Teaching the future provides younger generations with the skill sets and knowledge to solve problems of the future and thrive in a world full of change, disruption, and uncertainty.

What do you think the world will look like if teaching the future becomes the default?

Teaching the future will pave ways for increased collaboration, interdisciplinary thinking, and analyzing trends, which will help citizens make well-informed decisions.

Education, not just within schools, will foster the imagination, creativity, and scenario thinking of all citizens. Teachers may teach students to apply the knowledge they learn to the real world using futures thinking and problem-solving. All in all, I believe the world will be better prepared for change and thrive in face of uncertainties and conflicts.

Thank you Deona for being a Teach the Future member!

Feel free to connect with Deona via LinkedIn.


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